USPS Rate Changes – DIM Weight Pricing

June 11th, 2019 Comments off

 

Beginning June 23rd, 2019 the USPS will enact rate changes that will affect Dimensional Weight Pricing for Priority Mail, Priority Mail Express and Parcel Select Ground. To ensure a smooth transition for your business be sure to review the upcoming changes listed below.

 

What Is Dimensional Weight?

Dimensional weight reflects package density, which is the amount of space a package occupies on a delivery truck in relation to its actual weight. Space is important for shipping carriers since they want to keep costs low by filling their delivery trucks with as many packages as possible.

 

Dimensional Weight can be calculated using the formula:

DIM Weight = (length x width x height)/DIM Divisor

 

Change #1: DIM Divisor Will Decrease

The DIM divisor will decrease from 194 to 166; this means packages greater than one cubic foot will have a higher billable weight. To illustrate this point, let’s look at a sample package with the dimensions 16” x 14” x 12” going to Zone 4 via Priority Mail:

 

Old DIM Divisor

Using the Dimensional Weight formula we can determine the package’s billable weight under the old Dim Divisor.

(16” x 14” x 12”)/194

(2688 cubic inches)/194 = 13.85 lbs.

 

The USPS Priority Mail Rate for this package would be $17.57

 

New DIM Divisor

Using the same formula, but with the new divisor, we see that billable weight is now higher.

(16” x 14” x 12”)/166

(2688 cubic inches)/166 = 16.19 lbs.

 

The USPS Priority Mail Rate for this package would be $20.35 ($2.78 increase)

 

Change #2: DIM Weight Pricing will be applied to New Zones

Currently, DIM Weight Pricing is only applied to zones 5-9 within select mail classes. Beginning June 23rd, 2019 the USPS will expand the list of zones in which DIM Weight Pricing is applied.

  • Priority Mail: DIM Weight Pricing will be expanded to include zones 1-4 for packages over 1 cubic foot. Currently, DIM Weight Pricing only applies to zones 5-9 for packages over 1 cubic foot*.
  • Priority Mail Express: DIM Weight Pricing will be applied to packages over 1 cubic foot for zones 1-9. Currently, DIM Weight Pricing is not applied to Priority Mail Express.
  • Parcel Select Ground: DIM Weight Pricing will be applied to packages over 1 cubic foot for zones 1-9. Currently, DIM Weight Pricing is not applied to Parcel Select Ground*.

*Prior to January 27, 2019, balloon pricing was used for Priority Mail (zones 1-4) and Parcel Select Ground (zones 1-9) packages under 20 lbs. if the combined length and girth measured more than 84 inches but 108 inches or less.

 

Stamps.com Makes Dimensional Weight Pricing Easy

Stamps.com software includes everything customers need to calculate current postage rates. For mail classes with Dimensional Weight Pricing all you need to do is weigh your mail piece, enter your package’s dimensions, enter your destination and Stamps.com will automatically calculate the required postage.

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Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive – May 11, 2019

May 8th, 2019 Comments off

On Saturday, May 11, USPS and the National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) are hosting the 27th annual Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive. The USPS and NALC are asking communities across America to come together and tackle one of the nation’s biggest problems—hunger. This year the Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive hopes to surpass last year’s total of 71.6 million pounds of food collected. Food donations are distributed to food banks, pantries, shelters, and those in need all across America.

 

How to Participate in the Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive

To participate in the 27th Stamp Out Hunger food drive, residents are encouraged to leave a sturdy bag containing non-perishable foods, such as canned soup, canned vegetables, pasta, rice or cereal next to their mailbox before regular mail delivery on Saturday, May 11. Letter carriers will collect these food donations as they deliver the mail and take them to their local food bank or pantry, including many affiliated with Feeding America. Please note that expired products or products in glass containers will not be accepted.

 

What to Donate

Most-wanted foods include:

  • Canned meats and fish (tuna, chicken)
  • Canned and boxed meals (macaroni and cheese, soup, chili)
  • Pasta
  • Canned fruits and vegetables
  • Cooking oil
  • Canned or dried beans and peas (black, pinto, lentils)
  • Boxed cooking mixes
  • Fruit juice (canned, plastic or boxed)
Categories: USPS News Tags:

USPS Mailing Standards For Lithium Batteries

April 29th, 2019 Comments off

Shipping Regulations
When shipping lithium batteries, businesses must comply with U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) standards and Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) standards for preparing shipments that contain lithium batteries.  The standards are in place to ensure the safe transportation of shipments that include these batteries and cells.  Shippers are responsible to comply with these regulations or risk fines.

Luckily the USPS shipping regulations align with DOT and PHMSA regulations—so as long as your shipment follows USPS regulations, you are in the clear.

USPS Standards for Domestic Shipments Containing Lithium Batteries

  • Each cell cannot contain more than 1 gram of lithium
  • Each battery cannot contain more than 2 grams of lithium
  • All packages must contain a complete return address
  • For non-installed batteries, your package must have a DOT-approved lithium battery mark (UN3090)

Standards for Shipping Installed Batteries

  • Installed batteries must be protected from short circuit
  • Devices with batteries must have protection to prevent accidentally being powered-on
  • Equipment must be cushioned

Shipping Lithium Batteries to International Destinations?

Lithium batteries can only be shipped internationally if they are installed in the equipment they operate.  Shipping carriers are not allowed to ship packages containing only lithium batteries or cells to international locations – they must be included inside a product.  No markings or documentation are allowed on these international mailpieces.  This rule applies to all international as well as APO/FPO/DPO destinations.

More info on the U.S. Postal Service’s Lithium Battery mailing standards is available on the USPS.com site.

Stamps.com Customers Can Continue to Buy & Print All USPS Services

February 27th, 2019 Comments off

Here are answers to common questions regarding Stamps.com and the ability to print USPS postage:

Are USPS Services being removed from Stamps.com?
Absolutely not!  Nothing changes in Stamps.com services and features that we offer, including USPS postage printing.  Stamps.com will continue to operate as an officially licensed PC Postage vendor, and all USPS services will be available for our customers.


Will Stamps.com continue to offer USPS rate discounts?
Yes!  Stamps.com customers will be able to access all existing USPS rate discounts (Commercial Base Pricing) when they print postage.  And those discounts include access to the Metered Mail rate for First Class Mail letters – paying only $0.50 for a one-ounce letter vs. $0.55 at the Post Office.

USPS rate discounts that Stamps.com offers include:

USPS Shipping Rate Discounts

  • Priority Mail Express® – Save up to 14% off Post Office rates on all Priority Mail Express shipments.
  • Priority Mail® – Save up to 40% off Post Office rates on all Priority Mail shipments, depending on weight and distance.
  • First Class Package Service – Save up to 28% off Post Office rates on all First Class Parcels.
  • International Shipping – Save up to 5% on Priority Mail International shipments, up to 5% for Priority Mail Express International and up to 5% on First Class Package International Service.

USPS Mailing Rate Discounts

  • First Class Mail Letter – Save five cents and pay only $0.50 for a one-ounce First Class Mail letter compared to $0.55 at the Post Office.


Can I still print labels for USPS First Class Package Service with Stamps.com?
Yes!  Nothing is changing to the Stamps.com service and USPS First Class Package Service will remain the best low cost shipping option for packages under 15.999 ounces among all shipping carriers.


Are any of the e-commerce integrations with marketplaces (eBay, Amazon, etc.) or shopping cart integrations (Shopify, BigCommerce, Magento, etc.) going away from Stamps.com?

Nothing is changing – e-commerce sellers and online retailers will continue to be able to import their orders directly into Stamps.com to print USPS shipping labels.   See a full list of Stamps.com E-commerce Integrations.


Will there be any additional costs to use Stamps.com?
Most customers will see no change in costs to use Stamps.com.  For a limited group of high volume customers that have specialized negotiated rates with the USPS (also known as Negotiated Service Agreements or “NSA”), we will look at implementing surcharges as needed so that we are compensated for the technology and services we provide.


How does Stamps.com’s relationship with the USPS impact me as a customer?
For most customers, there will be no change to the Stamps.com product – the solution will continue to print USPS postage as it always has.  In the future, you may see additional shipping carriers as an option to print shipping labels.


Will the Stamps.com shipping API change?
The Stamps.com API is the #1 USPS postage API in the industry.  Customers will continue to be able to rate, ship, print and track USPS packages from our SOAP based web services API.  Get more info on our USPS Shipping API program.

Categories: USPS News Tags: , ,

USPS 2019 Rate Increase FAQ

February 6th, 2019 Comments off

 

At Stamps.com we often receive questions about the annual USPS postage rate increase. To help clarify some of the questions we get most, we’ve compiled this FAQ.

 

When did the new USPS rates start?

The 2019 USPS postage rate increase went into effect on Sunday, January 27, 2019.

When printing postage online for letters, do I get a discounted rate?

Yes, customers who print postage using Stamps.com save 5 cents per letter, paying only $0.50 instead of $0.55 (Post Office rate) – a 9% savings! This discount is known as the “Metered Mail rate” and is available for all postage printed using an approved PC Postage/online postage vendor such as Stamps.com.

I printed $0.47 “Metered Mail rate” NetStamps with Stamps.com in 2018. Can I use those NetStamps in 2019?

Since the “Metered Mail” rate is now $0.50 to send a one-ounce First-Class Mail letter, you will need to add additional postage worth $0.03 to your letter.

When printing shipping labels online, do I get a discounted rate?
Yes, customers who print postage online automatically qualify for discounted shipping rates (known as Commercial Base pricing) when purchasing Priority Mail, Priority Mail Express or First Class Package Service. These rates are automatically calculated when you print a shipping label inside the Stamps.com platform.

Does Stamps.com have an option to ship Merchandise using First Class Mail International Large Envelopes/Flats?

Yes! Stamps.com provides an exclusive service for online retailers to ship merchandise in a Large Envelope/Flat to an International destination at a significant cost savings compared to First Class Package International Service/ The savings can be $10.00 or higher per Flat shipped!

Is the Dimensional (DIM) Weight divisor changing for the USPS?

Note: The USPS has postponed this change until June 2019! The Dimensional Weight (DIM) divisor for Priority Mail packages over 1 cubic foot (1,728 cubic inches) is being adjusted from 194 to 166. DIM pricing is also being added to all shipping zones for Priority Mail parcels over 1 cubic foot as well as to Parcel Select and Priority Mail Express.

Did First Class Package Service rates change in 2019?

Yes, First Class Package Service is moving from a weight-only pricing to a zone and weight-based pricing. Rates will be based on the weight of the package (in ounces) and the shipping zone the package is traveling to.

I am a Stamps.com customer. Do I need to take any actions to get the new rates after January 27, 2019?

No, if you are a Stamps.com customer, you do not need to take any action. Stamps.com automatically updated all USPS rates inside the software and web-based version (Stamps.com Online) on Sunday, January 27, 2019.

Categories: USPS News Tags:

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